Welcome to another round of literary oddities. Come in, sit down, pull up a chair and start crying.
1. Under the Skin by Michael Faber. Michael Faber is the author of Crimson Petal and the White (which was brilliantly adapted by the BBC, very unlike your usual TV period romp).
I don’t want to say too much about this dark sci-fi else I give it away, but I read it in summer and truly felt the cold of the lonely Scottish highlands and was enthralled by the ideas behind it. The only other thing I’ll tell you is that it almost made me turn vegetarian again…
It’s apparently being adapted as a film by Jonathan Glazer (of Sexy Beast and Birth) with the very lovely Scarlett Johansson. Here’s a disturbing piece of teaser footage:
2. In Heaven Everything is Fine by Various. I love David Lynch and I love the fact that he inspires other people to be creative. I found some of the stories in this book pretty and thought provoking but others somewhat… impenetrable.
However that’s my own opinion and everyone will get something different from it. Just be aware that linear narrative isn’t always something Mr Lynch is strictly concerned with and neither should you be if you’re going to give this a try.
3. Incest by Anais Nin. One of the most famous diarists other than Samuel Pepys, Anais Nin was a creative bohemian who wrote of her affair with both Henry Miller and his wife June which later became the basis of her first ‘unexpergated’ diary Henry and June.
The next book released with all the exciting bits left in, Incest, includes a bizarre affair with her own father, possibly a result of the now recognised ‘disorder’ known as Genetic Sexual Attraction as they hadn’t seen each other for twenty years.
Though I was at first put off by her over-wrought style and inflamed passions I was soon drawn into her beautiful and poetic vision of the world, and came to love her writing for those very things.
4. Extra-Terrestrial Sex Fetish by Supervert. Partly a wry take on scientific musings of how a person may cope with a fetish for aliens – a fantasy that can never be realised due to their absence from this planet – and partly one man’s erotic journey through an alien world laced with philosophical pondering evoking the Marquis De Sade. The main character is even called Mercury De Sade.
There’s a lot of intelligence behind the daft humour and I liked this book very much. Plus there’s a video clip of porn star Stoya reading from his/her other book Necrophiliac Variations whilst something is going on under the table.
5. Bad Mags Volume 1: The Strangest, Sleaziest and Most Unusual Periodicals Ever Published! by Tom Brinkmann. I’m not sure how many volumes there actually are of Bad Mags, but I’m fairly confident that there are enough strange magazines out there to fill several copies of these reference books and Tom Brinkmann appears to know a lot about them.
Bad Mags focuses on the same places in pop culture that midnight movies live, featuring such publications as Official UFO, Mobs and Gangs, Bizarre Life, Shocker, Love-In, Horror Fantasy, Wildest Films, Freakout, Biker Orgy and literally tons more. How can there be more? You ask. Read it and find out.
Well, there we are, I hope your eyes have remained clean and your mind untroubled. Read them and try not to weep. Au revoir!